Tag Archives: Booze

High Times in the Plague Year: Booze & Cannabis Retailers Shine, by John McNellis

There are a few businesses doing well amid the coronavirus lockdowns. From John McNellis at wolfstreet.com:

Landlords already know this: People are getting more toasted than Wonder Bread

Happy Hour starts at 3 o’clock. Tenants selling reality-relief are killing it. I called a number of retailers to double-check my desultory anecdotal evidence. One, the owner of a first-rate supermarket chain, said his alcohol sales are up 25 percent since March. That came as no surprise, but the identity of his best-selling beer — Corona — did.

Along with half of America, I assumed that Corona was destined to become the Adolph of beer labels. Wrong. Drinkers love it — some think calling a hangover a “corona virus” is funny. This merchant said the only limitation on his Corona sales was lack of inventory. Neither he nor any other seller of liquor is asking for any rent breaks.

I called a major beer distributor in the Central Valley. Same story. Up 25 percent across the board. Any brand outselling the pack? “Honey, anything selling in a can or a bottle, our customers are buying it.”

Alcohol is easy to vet, sales are reported — no one’s cooking moonshine in their backyards. Marijuana? Let’s just say the numbers are a little cloudy. Without getting lost in the weeds, the big picture looks like this: Recreational marijuana (“rec”) consumption is up considerably this year, but precise numbers are hard to come by. Point of sale numbers for California’s legal rec were up 29 percent for the month of August.

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